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Bone Fragments: Too Gruesome to be Real

Bone Fragments are a US band formed by Tormentor and Phthisis in 2006. Their album Too Gruesome to be Real is the second full length of theirs, the first being Dark Amusement in 2010.

The band has a sound that is best described as a mix of black metal, traditional metal and death metal. The emphasis of the songs however is on the horror aspect of things and conveying a mood of dread and fear. The first few songs sway musically between black and death metal while the remainder of the songs have strong metal leanings. However, despite the fact that the band treads between these sounds musically, vocalist Lord Unfortunate has an odd voice that is neither screechy black metal, nor growled death metal. He in fact, sounds like the embodiment of a dead corpse come back to life to tear you to pieces. It's an interesting croak that works to convey the mood of dread in the music.

Along with the musical mood, the band also has conveyed horror in the packaging of the album. The cover depicts (From the song "Clawtooth the Octobunny") a weird rabbit/bat thingy with an oversized brain for a head and octopus arms. Weird? Yes. Unsettling? Definitely. In the inside of the CD booklet as well there is a disturbing image of what appears to be a doctor, leaving a trail of blood and dead bodies. The lyrics inside will also make you squirm a touch as you read them.

Now that being said, is the music any good? Well, in a word, yes. The songs, while by no means classics of the genre, are definitely solid and able to hold your attention throughout and I look forward to hearing more from the band.

Track Listing
1. Lurid Dream
2. Count Bludwig
3. Jezebel
4. Clawtooth the Octobunny
5. The Wandering Goblin
6. Dr. Slaughter
7. Nightmare

Added: November 24th 2012
Reviewer: Curtis Dewar
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 1796
Language: english

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Bone Fragments: Too Gruesome to be Real
Posted by Jeff B, SoT Staff Writer on 2012-11-24 09:29:59
My Score:

With album art depicting something in-between an octopus and a rabbit with demonic-looking eyes, Too Gruesome to be Real shows listeners what they're in for before they even put the disc in the player. Bone Fragments is a band that was clearly inspired by campy horror flicks, and their carnival-themed and experimental sound that accompanies the imagery is also pretty unique for a black metal act. Too Gruesome to be Real is the second album from this American collective, and though I've not yet heard the band's earlier material, this one is fully recommended to fans of black metal that deviates a little bit (or a hell of a lot) into left field.

Almost as if King Diamond were to start a symphonic black metal act, Bone Fragments has a very horror movie-type atmosphere. The creepy carnival-style keyboard tones, lo-fi production, and evil growls all give Too Gruesome to be Real a great atmosphere, and, stylistically, Bone Fragments' music resides somewhere in-between symphonic black metal, avant-metal, and even traditional heavy metal. Believe it or not, quite a few of the riffs here bear more resemblance to Mercyful Fate and Judas Priest than they do to Darkthrone and Burzum, and though the raw production can obscure the album's traditional metal edge, I'd imagine that most observant listeners would pick up on it. Other that that, many of the riffs are black metal-oriented and the presence of keyboards gives the album a bit of a symphonic edge - it is worth noting, however, that by 'symphonic', I am not implying anything bombastic in the vein of Dimmu Borgir or Cradle of Filth; this is much more like 'kvlt' black metal with the use of keyboards than an entirely different subgenre. Top it all off with a bit of an avant-garde, Mr. Bungle/Unexpect-inspired edge, and you have a unique album all around.

Too Gruesome to be Real was definitely an album that I enjoyed listening to, and Bone Fragments' rather unique sound is likely to raise some eyebrows in the black metal community. I'd definitely recommend this to fans of the genre looking for something a bit different, and I'll be curious to hear what Bone Fragments has to offer from here. Too Gruesome to be Real may take a few listens to sink in, but its one-of-a-kind atmosphere makes it worthy of your attention.

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